Justin Welby has spoken of his personal shame at the Church of England’s institutional racism and has promised to replace a “hostile environment” with a hospitable welcome. Speaking at a meeting of the Church’s ruling body, the General Synod, the Archbishop said he was “ashamed” of its history of racism. Mr Welby said he was “almost beyond words” after hearing about the racism faced by minority parishioners, priests and officials within the church.
Speaking at an event in London, he said: “I’m ashamed of our history and I’m ashamed of our failure.
“I’m ashamed of our lack of witness to Christ.
“I’m ashamed of my lack of urgent voice to the church… It’s shaming as well as shocking.”
The Archbishop added: “There is no doubt when we look at our own church that we are still deeply institutionally racist.”
The Archbishop of Canterbury has admitted the Church of England is 'racist' (Image: PA)
Justin Welby said he was 'ashamed' of the Church's history of racism (Image: Reuters)
Mr Welby’s comments come as Synod members voted unanimously for a motion to apologise for racism in the Church of England since the Windrush generation arrived in the UK.
The body also voted to “stamp out conscious or unconscious” racism.
The General Synod also voted to request research on how racism had influenced the fall in member numbers and the increase in church closures over the years.
The church will also now appoint an independent person to assess racism within its ranks and seek to increase the number of BAME Anglicans seeking ordination.
READ MORE: Ethnic minorities 'visible yet invisible' within Church of England
Justin Welby promised to replace a 'hostile environment' with a hospitable welcome (Image: PA)
Mr Welby, who decided to “ditch” a prepared speech and make off-the-cuff remarks, said church appointment panels – including the crown nominations commission, which